Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Taxation Without Representation

The reason the National Security Agency wants to read your email is because they are trying to use algorithms to detect terrorist activity. This invasion of privacy is based on the assumption that terrorists use the Internet in ways that are statistically distinct from the ways ordinary Americans use the Internet. In order to statistically detect online terrorist activity, the governmet needs a large sample of "normal" Internet use.

Although this may seem reasonable when we are confronted with an indistinct enemy, fighting on ill-defined battlefields, this really amounts to an unconstitutional indirect tax. Just as the Federal government incorporated FEMA into the Department of Homeland Security to hide the cost of creating the largest bureaucracy in the history of civilization, the government's use of private citizens' Internet service for surveillance purposes is used to hide the true cost of the War on Terror.

When the government compels private corporations to comply with national security directives, without compensating these corporations for the cost of implementing such directives, the cost is passed on to consumers.

Because the Administrative branch of government refuses to inform Congress as to the nature of these programs, these programs amount to taxation without representation.

Beyond violating the 4th Amendment right to protection against unwarranted search and seizure, this practice also violates the 5th Amendment, by effectively situating military operatives within private homes, taking private property for public use, and opening up the potential to compel private citizens to, in effect, unwittingly testify against themselves. Not only do these practices appropriate private citizens into the Federal intelligence infrastructure without compensation, but citizens are furthermore charged for this.

Our current Administration has a constitutional duty to either halt these programs, or to fully inform Congress as to their nature. In lieu of such disclosures, we as citizens have a duty to remove these criminals from office.

1 comment:

immanuel williams said...

wow dave!!
this is a pretty amazing piece of stuff, no kidding, i wish someone would pay you lots of money to carry this kind of writing in a publication reaching many many people. god.